Happy August everyone! I hope all is well. I am smack dab in the middle of packing up the house we’ve been living in for the last four years and getting ready to move to our new house in a few weeks. It's exhausting to pack. Exhausting to see how many things you can accumulate over four years. Exhausting to sort through and figure out what it is you need to let go of.
I've made a lot of promises to myself over the last seven days and pretty much all of them have to do with the fact that I’m just as happy when my house is empty as when it's full because I'm fortunate enough to share my life with people I love. I don't need things to be happy. It's one of those things you know, but can also forget. At least it is for me.
Over the weekend, between two holidays celebrating two countries that have developed their identities on Turtle Island, my husband and I had a conversation about how we'll approach certain discussions with our daughters, who we hope will grow up enjoying reading and books as much as we do (including Harry Potter). In particular, we were referring to literature that erases the presence of Indigenous Peoples on Turtle Island, the way J.K. Rowling's most recent Pottermore stories that take place in North America have done. Some of our discussion was also prompted by reading this article and thinking about the responsibilities we have as parents to speak up when things like this happen or to help educate others so that ours and other children experience less incidents of discrimination and racism in the world.
The answers we came to were not really simple. For the most part, they involved a lot of compassion, a lot of empathizing, a lot of patience, a lot of resilience and a willingness to flag when something doesn't feel right and to be able to talk about it with our girls in a good way. (Also a lot of learning of our language, sharing of our oral histories and writing of new stories).